Making extra money this summer
From seasonal jobs to side gigs, these are some savvy ways to boost your bank balance during the warmer months.
5 min read
With vacation and wedding season in full swing and social calendars bursting at the seams, summer can be an expensive time of year. But beyond the latest trends and idealized Instagram getaways, summer also comes with plenty of unique opportunities to boost your income. Whether you’re a student on semester break or a young professional looking for a side hustle, seasonal jobs and side gigs can be a smart way to build up a little summer nest egg.
Snap up a seasonal summer job
As the weather warms up, a refreshing wave of summer jobs starts to flood the seasonal job market. From checking wristbands at a festival to selling popcorn at an outdoor cinema, summer-centric events often require seasonal staff to handle the sudden influx of visitors. Working at seasonal, event-based gigs often means being in the great outdoors in a fun and vibrant atmosphere — a far cry from an office-based 9 to 5.
Alongside festivals and open-air cinemas, popular summer jobs include catering, bartending at pop-up events, or even getting a job on a cruise ship. Not only are seasonal summer jobs a great way to earn some extra money, but they also offer an easy way to meet people and potentially make some new friends. Here are a few of the most popular and unique jobs for earning extra cash this summer:
As people enjoy the summer by taking to the water, there’s an increased need for trained lifeguards. While lifeguard requirements may vary by location and the specific facility or organization, a few things are a must: physical fitness, CPR and first aid certification, strong communication and decision-making skills, and knowledge of water safety and rescue techniques. It can be demanding, but being a lifeguard is an incredibly important job. Who knows? You might even be in a position to save someone’s life.
Between mid-May and early June, summer camp season begins, and with it, the need for plenty of energetic camp counselors. Camp counselors organize and lead recreational activities, provide supervision and guidance, and ensure the well-being of their campers. If you enjoy working with children and have leadership skills and a passion for nature, this could be the ideal way to spend your summer.
Especially in popular destinations, the summer brings with it an influx of tourists. This can be a lucrative opportunity for anyone with excellent communication skills and a strong command of local history — bonus points if you have a friendly, charming personality! Tour guides are like ambassadors for their local area, leading guests through the city’s streets and stories. If you like meeting new people and don’t mind being the center of attention, working as a tour guide can be a fun and rewarding job. Plus, witnessing the excitement and appreciation of your guests can help you see your home through the fresh eyes of first-time visitors.
Garden maintenance worker
Outdoor maintenance and landscaping work during the summer months offers a balance between physical activity, creative expression, and time out in nature. You can find employment with a landscaping company or independently provide services such as lawn mowing, gardening, and general property maintenance. Just remember that physical strength, knowledge of landscaping tools and techniques, and attention to detail are essential for this kind of work.
Theme park attendant
Theme parks are popular summer destinations, and working as a theme park attendant can be a fun, memorable seasonal job. It might involve assisting with ride operation, crowd management, ticketing, and guest services. For a role like this, you’ll need to have excellent people skills. Plus, it’s important to be able to handle a fast-paced environment and a certain amount of responsibility — but you’re not likely to get bored.
How to manage additional income streams
Embracing a seasonal job and exploring some potential side gigs can make summer a fruitful and financially rewarding season. However, it’s essential to manage and maximize your earnings wisely — and that means budgeting, considering any tax implications, and creating a financial safety net. These healthy money-management habits can help you to build wealth over the long term and reach your financial targets. Here’s how to make the most out of your summer earnings.
Create a budget
The first step to creating a budget is to track all of your income streams and expenses over a three-month period. This will help you get a clear understanding of your cash flow. Then, identify your fixed expenses — such as rent, utilities, and loan payments — and any variable expenses such as groceries, transportation, and entertainment. Next, decide how much should be spent on fixed and variable costs and how much should be contributed toward savings goals.
The 50/30/20 budgeting method offers a simple approach here, with 50% of income going towards fixed costs, 30% towards variable costs, and 20% towards savings goals or getting out of debt. By creating a budget, it’s easier to make informed spending decisions. In turn, this helps you build a solid financial foundation and feel more financially empowered.
Stay up-to-date with taxes
Don't forget about taxes! Tax obligations vary depending on the type of summer work. Some employees and all freelancers are responsible for reporting and paying taxes on any earnings. To prepare for meeting your tax-related responsibilities, make sure to track your income, keep and organize receipts, set aside a portion of everything you earn so that you’re prepared come tax time, and consult a tax advisor.
Create a financial safety net
Saving for an emergency fund is crucial — it provides a buffer for any unexpected expenses or financial hardships. Consider setting aside a portion of any summer earnings in a dedicated savings account. It's important to keep your emergency fund separate from a regular checking account to avoid dipping into it for non-emergency purposes — which can otherwise be very tempting! Aim to build a fund that could cover at least three- to six-months' worth of essential expenses. And why not make it easy on yourself and automate your savings? Simply set up regular automatic transfers to your emergency fund account.
Your money at N26
N26 offers a simplified and stress-free way of managing your money. With Spaces, you can create multiple savings sub-accounts, each tied to one of your savings goals — making it easier to reach your financial targets. Plus, thanks to instant push notifications each time money enters or leaves your account, staying up-to-date with your finances has never been simpler. You’ll also gain a deep understanding of your spending habits with Insights and get a monthly snapshot of your financial health with your Monthly Wrap-Up. Find the right account for you.
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